The Fun Part of the Job

A favorite hat our editors wear is "professional newcomer," which allows us to see communities with fresh perspectives. We love digging up stories about things locals take for granted. Sometimes we find examples of global impact, as in Swiftwater, Pa., where vaccines are produced that protect the world. We use data-driven research and livability principles to guide content decisions, yet delight in finding and sharing the unexpected.

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POCONO MOUNTAINS REGION, PA

Sometimes we find examples of global impact coming out of small communities such as Swiftwater – part of Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains region – where Sanofi Pasteur produces vaccines that help protect the world from diphtheria, meningitis, influenza and yellow fever.

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TYLER, TX

People in Tyler, Texas really do see the world through rose-colored glasses. An estimated 20 percent of the nation's roses come from Tyler, which is also the home of the largest rose garden in the nation. Also weighing in with a "biggest in the nation" accolade is McAllen, Texas, where leaders converted a former Walmart into an award-winning library that tops all others in square footage.

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TWIN FALLS, ID

If you want to know the only place in the country where you can BASE jump from a bridge without a permit, we've got you covered. You can gaze upon a waterfall that is taller than Niagara Falls there, too.

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PUEBLO, CO

While most have heard about San Antonio's riverwalk, did you know the much smaller city of Pueblo, Colorado has one, too? The town's 1.5-mile long Historic Arkansas River Project may be a fraction of the size of its Texas counterpart, but it has been huge in transforming this former steel city into a vibrant, colorful arts destination.